Technology is changing fast and nowadays, smartphones are tech gadgets of choice that allow users to communicate and access files on-the-go. Besides being useful tools, mobile phones can pose a huge security risk, a downside often ignored by most of the mobile users. Just like a desktop computer, a smartphone is a tiny portable computer that hackers can intrude and steal valuable information such as contacts, bank information or credentials such as passwords. Here are a few security measures that you can use to mitigate mobile phone security risks.
Use In-Built Phone Security Features
All mobile phones and especially smartphones come with security features that, if used properly, can protect your phone against intruders. Creating a basic password, for example, can make it harder for eavesdroppers to access your most useful data on your phone, keeping it safe and secure. A phone’s password can be harnessed with other extended security features such as alphanumeric passwords, pattern (dotted) codes, fingerprints and other security mechanisms.
Although data encryption is a security measure mostly used in computers, the practice can also be used in smartphones to secure important data and information. Some mobile phones come with in-built encryption services, but one can also download data encryption apps. In addition, you can take advantage of network-provided encryption features to secure phone calls, text and other data against eavesdroppers.
Beware of Text Scams
Remember the caution in emails “Never click a link from unknown email?” Well, the same applies in mobile phones but what’s more, the link can also be embedded in a text message, which is tempting to click. Today, scammers can also use phishing text messages with an aim to extract mobile users’ personal information. They can also embed malware in text links to seize over your phone for important information. Be wary of vague text messages with suspicious links and never click on message links from unfamiliar sources.
Avoid Unsafe Mobile Payment Apps
While it’s convenient to transact and make payments through mobile apps, users should be extremely careful on which apps to use. Mobile apps do not come with a guarantee against intrusion, and hackers can use such app to access crucial banking information. Most banks provide their own mobile apps which are secure and tightly monitored for eavesdropping. Always use reliable payment apps from known companies and avoid non-secure or bootlegged mobile payment apps.
Be Cautious of Public Internet
Nowadays, free public Wi-Fi is available at popular joints, coffee shops, restaurants, hotel lobbies etc. While public Wi-Fi provides convenience of working on your smartphone at favorite joints, users should be cautious of security risks such as hackers, phishing, and eavesdropping. Hackers can maliciously scheme through free public Wi-Fi that looks absolutely legit with an aim to access and steal users’ private information. Always use secure public Wi-Fi and stay away from connections that look suspicious.